MUMBAI: In an interview with Subhash K. Jha, Megastar Amitabh Bachchan gets candid. Here are a few excerpts:
Amitji, you are months away from turning 70. What are your thoughts at this point of time ?
That I am alive and grateful to the Almighty that I am.
Directors keep inventing new ways of presenting you on screen. Does the process of re-inventing yourself as an actor still excite you?
I do not know what re-inventing means. I am no alien from outer space, who, when he loses his arm re-invents it. I am an actor, at least some still believe that I am, and they offer projects and roles to me, which if it has an approval gets me employment. The excitement is in facing a camera to express in best terms, what has been desired of me. Once an actor, I presume, always an actor …
In recent months your health has been of primary concern to all your well-wishers. How well have you healed and recovered by now?
Health is a factor that shall remain an issue with every human. We are not supermen, we will fall ill and by the acumen invested in the medical profession, seek cure. Being in a profession that puts us in the category of a celebrity, there is natural interest in what we do, go through, including health. And yes, there is bound to be concern among our well wishers. But their concern brings prayer for our well being and we recover and survive. My health since I joined this distinguished profession has been going through its fair share of setbacks, and has, as I said, through prayer and good wishes and the brilliance of the medical doctors of our land, been able to put me back up again. I feel embarrassed to talk about it in the manner you wish me to, and to be frank, find it somewhat intrusive. My condition shall be recognized and reflected by my profession, which as you may well know, depends largely on the physical attributes of an individual. If I am capable of coming in front of the cameras, and those that employ me do not have issues, then I am fine. If not then I am not.
Your pace of work has understandably slackened in recent months. Do you intend to return to your normal pace of work in the near future?
No my pace has not slackened ! My recent surgeries were long overdue and I deliberately took time off to attend to them. All pending work was completed, and there were no outstandings. And yes, all normal work conditions shall prevail.
Which new movie assignments have you said yes to? Which film would you start shooting for first?
There are 5 or 6 on the anvil, but nothing that has been finalized. What has been finalized is KBC. The new season of KBC is to begin.
What would the innovations be during this season?
Yes KBC starts again with me in the new season, but what the innovations would be can only be disclosed after I have permission to do so. Right now they are bound contractually. The impact of KBC on the Indian middleclass is exceptional.
Did you expect the show to make such an impact when you began KBC in the year 2000?
No … I did not !
Finally, your thoughts on the completion of 100 years of cinema.
100 years in the life of any institution is an extremely long period to react on, I am afraid. Suffice to say that of the 100 years of its existence, I have had the great privilege and honour to be a small part, of its 43 very exciting years !!